Norpace Uses

By preventing the heart from responding to premature electrical signals, Norpace can help treat life-threatening heart rhythm problems called ventricular arrhythmias. Although it can help control these heart rhythm problems, Norpace is not a cure. Norpace is reserved for use in adults, although there may be times where it can be used in children. Off-label uses include treating supraventricular arrhythmias.

What Is Norpace Used For?

Norpace® (disopyramide) is a prescription antiarrhythmia medication approved to treat certain types of irregular heartbeats known as ventricular arrhythmias. It should only be used to treat ventricular arrhythmias that are considered life-threatening.

What Are Ventricular Arrhythmias?

Ventricular arrhythmias are heart rhythm problems that occur in the lower chambers of the heart, or the ventricles. Just as there are several different types of arrhythmias in general, there are several different types of ventricular arrhythmias.
Not all ventricular arrhythmias are life-threatening. For example, premature ventricular contractions, a type of arrhythmia associated with extra heartbeats that begin in the ventricles, rarely cause symptoms and usually do not require treatment.
Ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation, on the other hand, are serious, potentially life-threatening types of ventricular arrhythmias. Ventricular tachycardia occurs when the ventricles beat quickly, causing a heart rate in excess of 120 beats a minute. When the heart rate is very fast or lasts longer than several seconds, symptoms can occur. Symptoms of ventricular tachycardia include:
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Shortness of breath
  • Heart palpitations (feelings of a racing or pounding heart).
Ventricular tachycardia that lasts for longer than 30 seconds, or sustained ventricular tachycardia, can be dangerous because it could turn into ventricular fibrillation. In ventricular fibrillation, the ventricles contract in such an uncoordinated manner that they quiver instead of beating normally. Ventricular fibrillation is a medical emergency that must be treated immediately to prevent death.
Norpace is only approved to treat life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias, such as sustained ventricular tachycardia. It can help control the abnormal heart rhythm, but will not cure it. This drug should not be used in people who have less severe ventricular arrhythmias, such as premature ventricular contractions, even if they are experiencing symptoms.
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Norpace Medication Information

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